Dead piglets

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Koen
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Dead piglets

Post by Koen » Tue Apr 21, 2015 1:00 pm

I had some bad luck with my recent litters: I lost 4 piglets out of 20. They all were breathing rapidly, off feed, slow. They all got one or several shots of Baytrill (which should be a strong antibiotic) from the vet. When I found them dead there was blood on their noses and mouth. Some died after one day, some after 3-4 days. Except for those four it was not spreading to the other piglets.

I know it seems like pneumonia (Actinobacillus Pleuropneumonia (App)) but here was no reaction at all on the Baytrill and no blue ears or coughing.

Could it be selenium/vit E defficiency? @Wendy: you wrote about it in your book.
Or something else?

simon
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Re: Dead piglets

Post by simon » Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:17 am

Its not something I have encountered. But before you dispose of the bodies I would consider taking one to the vet for testing. They would be able to give you a definitive answer.

The Rushbury Pig
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Re: Dead piglets

Post by The Rushbury Pig » Sun Apr 26, 2015 4:26 pm

In Selenium deficiency you generally see one of two things - piglets with very weak/lose joints so they are low on their pasterns and sloppy in their walking. They also frequently scour but not always the case. The other thing I am aware of that selenium deficiency causes (for the same reasons as the joint problem) is sudden heart attack.

Heart/lung problems, as you suggest, are certainly what I would suspect first. It is sometimes about finding the right antibiotic in that case as well as an anti inflammatory. I have 3 antibiotics I work through if one does not cause a response. The final one I use is Marbocyl. Not licensed for pigs I don't think but you use it when all else has failed.What has you vet suggested? I would always recommend talking to your vet but I suspect you have :)

Your description of the dead piglets also sounds like when a the sow has laid on them. You often find small amounts of blood around the nose and mouth but because they have been suffocated/crushed. In the cases I have seen this where I know this is what has happened I have not been able to see much other evidence of crushing. However obviously, in your case, there is other evidence that makes it clear this is not the reason. It just maybe useful to someone else reading this post for help :)

I did have a similar thing happen with Berkshires once. The conclusion we drew was that, as it was the only litter I had not been able to spray umbilicals on, that is was an infection of that had entered through that route.

I would always recommend that you have an autopsy if you can because that is the only way we can be sure what the cause of death was in a case like this. I had a piglet with breathing and circulation problems earlier in the year and had treated with several antibiotics under instruction from my vet. In the end we had to euthanase the piglet and then carried out a PM. This pig had a small heart and thick tubes leaving the heart. She had reached the limit of her heart's capacity sadly.

Not sure if I have helped but these are things I would be considering.

Let us know if you find out what has gone on.
Cheerio for now, Sam Jones :-)

BKKPS Chairperson
Email : samjonesbkkps@aol.com
Tel: 0845 489 5863, leaving a message for the secretary who will forward to me.

The Rushbury Pig
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 5:03 pm
Location: Shropshire

Re: Dead piglets

Post by The Rushbury Pig » Sun Apr 26, 2015 4:32 pm

I forgot to mention that I find kunekune far more likely to take amniotic fluid into their lungs at birth and this is often a cause for concern because in the long run I find it can lead to piglets dying the following day or a couple of weeks later especially if infection sets in. I always carefully swing new born croaky piglets (if I am present) and rub them well to avoid this if possible. Particularly a problem in very short nose piglets I find :)
Cheerio for now, Sam Jones :-)

BKKPS Chairperson
Email : samjonesbkkps@aol.com
Tel: 0845 489 5863, leaving a message for the secretary who will forward to me.

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